Thousands of spectators lined the route to cheer on participants in this year’s Brighton Veteran Car Run on the first Sunday in November. A healthy 420 of the 483 pre-1905 cars which started made the finish.
Following a concours in Regent Street the day before, the first competitors left London’s Hyde Park at sunrise, and just over three hours later the first car reached the finish line at Madeira Drive on Brighton’s seafront. That was the 1900 Napier Double Phaeton of Christopher Thomas (above), which was taking part for the 54th time. “It went very well – the roads were very clear,” said Thomas of his 22nd London-Brighton run. “The police were excellent and I was lucky as all the traffic lights were green!”
The Napier finished 10 minutes ahead of the second car, Tim Scott’s 1903 60hp Mercedes, and 25 minutes ahead of the 1902 Opel track racer of Rene Kreis. Formula 1 designer Adrian Newey took part on a 1901 Mors. It was 4pm before the last finishers reached the coast.
“It has been a fantastic day and probably the best run ever,” said event director Roger Etcell. “Good weather and good road conditions have been very helpful in getting the cars to
Brighton in record time.” Next year’s London to Brighton will be held on Sunday November 1.